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Not to want to commute 2.5 hours each way to work

(75 Posts)
lauralaughs Fri 22-Feb-13 04:51:42

In sum, we live in a small flat in West London, but an opportunity has arisen for us to rent a lovely house at more or less the same price from a family friend in the Sussex countryside but we had only 6 months to get organised, and I need to give 3 months notice on my job (in Middlesex) At the moment I am the breadwinner and dh looks after the 2 young kids at home, although he does try to work on his fledgling business from home too and we would all welcome the space of the house with the garden etc, he would be able to do his stuff more effectively in an office, the kids would have room to play etc.

Although I have applied for several jobs in the area, I did not see any real job opportunities in my sector until quite recently, and I am still waiting to hear if I have an interview from the jobs I applied for within the last month. I have told dh that I would love to move to the house, however, I cannot give notice on my house or job until I have work in the new area. We have calculated that my commute would cost around 1/4 of my earnings, and would be a 5 hour round trip each day! Youngest dc is 20 months old, I would not see as much of both kids as I would like and would be exhausted, my job is already putting me under a lot of pressure. My parents and sister have advised my not to move, for both job security and health of mind and body. I agree with them, much as I would love to take up the opportunity. The owner of the house really does need to let out the house asap for his financial position. Dh says we should bite the bullet and go for it! I will be able to get a job in the area soon and it will only be a temporary situation, with such a commute! He promises to come up with the goods financially with his business in a short space of time, but his track record in that respect is not great!
I have told him I will not take the risk and do the commute, and he now wants a divorce!

Monty27 Fri 22-Feb-13 07:54:58

Sorry about 'she' should have said OP


Monty27 Fri 22-Feb-13 07:56:57

Ohmergerd, am I reading correctly? It's 2.5 hours each way confused

CharlotteBronteSaurus Fri 22-Feb-13 08:09:11

SIL did a very similar commute, Hampshire to West London, for about 18mo
She ending up quitting the job with nothing to go to as the hours were killing her, and at the time she was a 20something with no DC

valiumredhead Fri 22-Feb-13 08:11:06

Dh did this for years - it nearly killed him.

Inclusionist Fri 22-Feb-13 08:12:12

So you are basically in this position because you are trying to help a mate out by renting his house?? Is the friendship worth the pressure it's putting your family under?

If moving away from London so you can have a bigger house/ space to play is the right thing for your family why don't you just start looking for a more rural job? I take it you are SMT? It's a mega short half term but I'm sure a lot of jobs will turn over in the next 4 weeks.

Can you not just go for a job you want rather than a specific area and then rent some other lovely house near new job? Presumably your DH can nurture his business from anywhere?

GetOrf Fri 22-Feb-13 08:12:16

I had a 2 and a half hour commute for a year (however luckily I was able to work one day a week at home, but 4 days was bad). I would leave the house at 6 and get in at half 7 or half 8. I got used to it tbh but I used to get so tired. And no way would I consider it with a 20 month old baby - I felt horribly guilty about my dd and she is 17.

I now have a different job and my commute is an hour and 10 mins - started this week and I feel completely elated. I got home at half 6 the other day. Really feel different. I still have to go to London (the original commute) once a week but that will be fine.

GetOrf Fri 22-Feb-13 08:16:27

Also I have colleagues who commute into london from Eastbourne (so presumably the train line you might use) - neverending problems with delays and the trains are always packed so standing room only a lot of the time. Plus they come into London Bridge or Victoria so you would have a tube journey on top to get to west london (and the tube journey is what used to finish me off)

undercoverhousewife Fri 22-Feb-13 08:22:41

This is a reversal of a common situation where the SAHM is wanting to move further away from, say, London, in order to have a better quality of life. IME this always has a much bigger negative impact on the husband than was ever anticipated and the marriages/families gradually fall apart.

In studies of happiness, commuting time has a BIG impact that is always underestimated. Don't do it. If you can first sort out a job in the countryside (where you want to be), you can then find a lovely house. Is the rent you are being offered truly that subsidised if your relative needs the money? There will be other houses but sort out the job first.

Binkybix Fri 22-Feb-13 08:25:47

I definitely couldn't do this, and would really resent my DH putting pressure on me to do so.

It's too easy to forget that we only have a certain amount of time, particularly when children are growing up, and you never get that time back again. Is it worth it to move to this particular house? Surely sort the job then find another house out of London. There is more than 1!

samandi Fri 22-Feb-13 08:26:56

Not worth it IMO. I've done commutes like that but only on a short term basis or not full time. Full time for a long period and with kids sounds like a nightmare.

TheFallenNinja Fri 22-Feb-13 08:27:47

YANBU. This sounds like simple maths. Less money/time = bad

Bobyan Fri 22-Feb-13 08:30:29

Are you sure he isn't going to get you to do this and then split from you and claim that you're the main breadwinner and you have to financially support him?

happyAvocado Fri 22-Feb-13 08:34:53

I commute over 2.5 driving daily, it is v.tiring and unless your job is amazing you would hate it too.

I would really think of the bit he says - he want's a divorce, that is a symptom of something bubbling under the surface of your marriage or he's fuse is so short he should see his GP

TalkativeJim Fri 22-Feb-13 08:52:00

'...and now he wants a divorce.'

- that tells you EVERYTHING you need to know to make a decision. Your answe should be - no, no way am I making this tremendous sacrifice, because the person it seems I'd mainly be making it for seems not to be on my side or part of a team with me at all, instead they seem to be a manipulative blackmailing wanker for whom I appear to exist solely to finance their lovely lifestyle.'

You need to look long and hard at your 'D'P. He's basically saying that he doesn't care if you are unhappy as long as he is happy. He has no interest in the potential effect on all of the rest of his family of this move (do you think your children will be made happier by only seeing you, effectively, on the weekend?). The most important person is him, and the only factor to consider is how he will feel. If you disagree, he will threaten you to get what he wants. He does not care at a whether you are happy.

Does this sound like him, or not? Only you know whether that threat says something about him as a person, and your relationship, or whether it was a silly angry remark.

Even if the latter, however, the fact remains that this move would require a huge sacrifice on your part, and none on his. Therefore, the decision has to be yours. A good partner and a team player would know this instinctively. A happy family and a good marriage can't work any other way. It's worrying that he seems not to see that. You wouldn't be happy if you did this and the whole family dynamic would be compromised. If that matters less to him than his comfort, you have a lot to worry about. The fact that you say you don't entirely trust him to keep his promises re work raises the same question marks...

In short, tell him to bog off, and then use some of the comments you will get on this thread to start a discussion on why he prioritises his own wants over the happiness of the family as a unit... and point out that the only way is down from there on. A Sussex garden looks a pretty thin compensation for resentment and a fractured family...

SminkoPinko Fri 22-Feb-13 08:59:21

No way. Commuting that adds 5 hours to the working day is absolutely bound to be an enemy of family happiness.

We work (fairly) locally but have flexible hours so a couple of days each where we get in much later (about 8/9pm). This gives me an inkling of the horror that would ensue with a long commute. My partner's temperament is of the easily stressed variety and he is generally utterly foul on the nights he works late. He gets back feeling grumpy, unreasonable, tired. Interaction is limited to him moaning about whatever is for dinner and anything else that occurs to him and me trying to give him the benefit of the doubt because I know he's knackered but sometimes having to point out that he's acting like an arse. There is no way he can contribute anything positive to family life on those nights. Our youngest is in bed and the rest of us pretty much ignore him those 2 nights a week. He is also fairly foul on the nights I work late if he feels stressed by sole care of the children. Granted a lot of this is linked to his personal inability to cope when tired and stressed but let's face it, who doesn't find it hard to some extent? I am a chilled out type and don't think I am horrible in the same way but I am also pretty useless with family stuff on the days when I get home from a 12+ hour day. Housework, quality time with the children etc goes out of the window. I just want to relax and do my own thing to recover from the day!

Do not do it. Divorce him if necessary! Is he really serious about that? Surely not.

LessMissAbs Fri 22-Feb-13 09:07:13

OP, you don't give up your job for a rented house, you move house because of a new job. Its absolutely crazy to even consider moving house in a recession before you have a new job. The only time you might consider it is if the house were bargain of the year and you were buying it, and might make money on it worth more than your salary.

Your DH is an utter fool to pressurise you into considering this, just so he can have a country lifestyle. You of course would hardly ever get to see the house or enjoy it. As for threatning divorce if he doesn't get his own way, however flippantly - seriously how have you put up with him for so long??

Plenty more rented houses will come up - simply keep looking for a job in a more rural area and then once thats secured, look for a property to rent, or even buy, close by. At the moment your lifestyle doesn't sound too bad, so don't jeaopardise unemployment or a long commute.

AngryGnome Fri 22-Feb-13 09:07:51

I missed the bit about divorce! If he is serious about this then my advice would be in no way should you follow this plan to move. Big daily commutes do place a stress on family life and if your relationship is already at the point where he can casually blackmail you with threats if divorce then I think the commuting lifestyle would only make things worse. Also, what about all your support networks, friends and family - would you be leaving those behind as well?

verytellytubby Fri 22-Feb-13 09:08:18

He wants a divorce if you don't agree to an extra 5 hours on your working day confused bloody hell. And he doesn't work. Wow. Just wow.

expatinscotland Fri 22-Feb-13 09:10:45

Don't move! Your DH is not the one doing the commute. He wants a divorce because you won't commute 5 hours/day?! I'd show him the door for being an emotionally manipulative bully!

ISeeSmallPeople Fri 22-Feb-13 09:12:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ArbitraryUsername Fri 22-Feb-13 09:13:44

I wouldn't do it. A garden is not worth a ridiculous daily commute. No matter how nice the garden.

I agreed to move here and commute to my old workplace (4 hours drive away; much longer on the train). I only had to go in once a week/once a fortnight and could work at home the rest of the time but it was utterly unsustainable. So I managed to get a new job about 1.5 hours commute (this time by train) each way (more like 2+ hours by the time you've factored in everything else between leaving the house and getting in to my work). I have to go in 1 or 2 times a week (sometimes more). It is still exhausting and really too much, but it was the closest I could find. It's not good (and I have health problems that mean all my doctors look utterly horrified that I have to commute).

One other thing to consider is that your relationship may not survive anyway, even if you do move. This seems likely given that your H is already threatening divorce. You'll end up seeing very little of the children while still funding his chosen lifestyle.

H and I are in the process of splitting up and I am in a horrible position because of the commute. H is applying for jobs all over the country (and making noises about abroad, along the lines of how I should stay here because there's an international airport very close by, etc) and it's going to leave me alone with the children hours away from my workplace (and also hours away from any family support). I will have to move (and seriously disrupt the kids) eventually. With hindsight, I should never have agreed to move away from my workplace. I hate commuting and it makes everything considerably more difficult.

YANBU. Don't do it.

expatinscotland Fri 22-Feb-13 09:16:04

What a dickwad - give up a secure job for a rented house and a 5-hour/day commute so he can have office space. How about he get a job at evenings and weekends to pay for a bigger place to live in London? Too much trouble, eh?

NO way I'd leave a secure job in education for a rented house.

mmmuffins Fri 22-Feb-13 09:16:31

I was all set to say YANBU but then saw it would be temporary, so am now undecided. If you did take the house in Sussex, I would very much stay over in a hotel near your work on Tuesday and Thursday night, to eliminate a large portion of commuting and stress. Hopefully it wont be too long before you can find a job closer to Sussex.

But at the end of the day you don't have to take the house. If moving to the countryside is something your family very much want to do, then perhaps you can plan it on your own accord, and do everything properly and not rush.

(If the divorce comment from you DH was serious, then I think you have bigger issues then where you live!)

MistyB Fri 22-Feb-13 09:18:41

There will be other houses in the countryside that you can rent and get all those benefits when you have the rest of the building blocks in place.

Sit down together, do a life plan. Put your needs, wants and must have steps down on paper and work towards the dream rather than putting the end point in first and forcing the rest of your life to match it.

Get a new job in an area you like where you can afford space and a garden, allow your husbands business to get off the ground (no mean feat while looking after two children full time!!) and then go house hunting.

ENormaSnob Fri 22-Feb-13 09:28:48

How about your dh gets a proper job to facilitate the move?

Imvho, if he's banging on about divorce because you won't comply with his unreasonable demands then I really think you need to reevaluate your current arrangement.

You could be left in a horrible position here. Thinking he will look for sole custody, the house and maintenance.

Protect yourself, I think you're going to need it tbh sad

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